Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Life of the Wretched and Infamous

Lisa Kaiser of the Shepherd Express, one of the last true reporters in Wisconsin, much less Milwaukee, did some shifting through Scott Walker's campaign finance report.  Her findings are amazing.

As the gentle reader already knows, Walker has been spending most of his time traveling across the nation from one fundraiser to another in his not so secret presidential campaign.  As a tribute to his fundraising skill, he raised $3.5 million in the past six months, albeit the far majority of it comes from out of state.  Those of us living here aren't willing to throw good money after bad.  And we know he's as bad as it gets.

But even though he raised quite a lot of money, he has also been spending it like mad, too.  Walker blew through $2 million in the past six months.  A lot of the money went for private charter jets, posh hotels, fancy restaurants, "administrative expenses" at Macy's and a trip to Hooter's (maybe to visit his former campaign spokeswoman, Ciara Matthews?).

One of the biggest expenses caught my attention, not just because of the amount of money spent, but what it was spent on:
Legal Fees: Although some of his former hires are doing jail time, Walker wasn’t charged in the long-running John Doe investigation into his county executive office and political aides. But the price of freedom didn’t come cheap. The governor transferred $247,602 to the Scott Walker Trust, his criminal defense fund, bringing the total up to about $450,000. State law requires him to get the OK of donors whose money is used for this fund, but Walker doesn’t have to get that consent in writing or provide any documentation to the state Government Accountability Board. He only has to declare on this campaign finance form that he made a lump-sum transfer to his criminal defense account.

Walker also paid fees for “compliance-administration” to Stephen Biskupic ($10,000), Foley and Lardner ($11,446) and Michael Best & Friedrich ($9,298).
I point this out because in the days and weeks ahead, even though Jeff tried to steal my thunder, there is more. There is always more.

Popular - A Parody Tribute To Anthony Weiner

Slightly NSFW, depending on where you work, but very funny:

H/T The Political Carnival

WI - Occasionally Broke

By Jeff Simpson

Everyone knows that Wisconsin is broke, and that "pension reform" will be coming soon.  (Forgetting the fact for the moment, that when Scott Walker talks reform he means take more money from working WI and redistribute it to his donors).   The problem with the Wisconsin State pension system, it is only broke occasionally(H/T Wisconsin Reporter who also occasionally stumbles on an actual story):

MADISON – The good people of Wisconsin’s 6th Congressional District first elected Tom Petri to serve as their representative in the U.S. House in a special election in April 1979.

Times have changed in Wisconsin and national politics, but the 6th District’s representative hasn’t.
Now into his 18th term, Petri, a Fond du Lac Republican, is a fixture of Wisconsin’s congressional delegation. He also is the beneficiary of a $174,000 annual salary and will ultimately benefit from what the National Taxpayers Union calls the “single most personally valuable perk to a Member of Congress” – his federal government pension plan.

As it stands, the veteran congressman expects to earn a pension north of $100,000 per year, based on his earnings and what would be his 36 years in Congress upon the close of his latest term.

“Congressional pensions are typically 2-3 times more generous than those offered to similarly-salaried workers in the private sector, and are even more generous than pensions for most federal workers,” the National Taxpayers Union asserts on its website.

But Petri isn’t waiting to draw a federal pension. The long-serving lawmaker came to Congress after a six-year political career in the Wisconsin state Senate.

Last year, Petri collected $14,878 from his Wisconsin Retirement System pension, in which he was vested after five years of public service.

In 2011, Petri received $14,950 in legislative pension payments, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.

Since 2008, the congressman has pocketed some $64,000 in state legislative pension payments, according CRP, a campaign fundraising and political information tracker. Admittedly, the pension payments are a drop in the bucket for a lawmaker whose net worth, placed somewhere between $9.52 million and $45.41 million, ranks him 22th wealthiest among his House peers, according to CRP.

Petri sees nothing wrong with cashing the pension checks he rightfully earned.

$15K/yr for serving 6 years in the Wisconsin legislature that works  about 3 months a year.  Not a bad gig if you can get it.  Especially when you are worth on the north side of $45 MILLION dollars and do not pay taxes!  

Remember this the next time politicians star attacking YOUR pension.  They need you to take a  pay cut so there is more money for them! 

PS:  It appears that "double dipping" is acceptable for republicans only!


Disclaimer:  1.  Petri is NOT the only person to double dip and pull such large pension payments from the state, he is just one example.   2.  Its not bad pay for someone whose job has devolved into just votin gno on Obamacare!  

Governor Walker is Special

By Jeff Simpson

 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14

I remember hearing the story of how infrastructure in Milwaukee fell on a 15 year old boy and killed him in front of his family.   I remember thinking what I always think when I hear stories of children dieing(especially as a father) of how horrible that would be and how I can not even imagine having to bury one of my children.    Which, I would assume, is the first thought of most people.  With some notable exceptions! 

Scott Walker and his campaign team

Their first thought was - what can we do to minimize the damage to our campaign and political future.  

Walker's top aide and great friend Tim Russell was extremely worried as to Scott Walker's location when the tragedy happened:

 [Former Walker aide Tim] Russell asked the email chain where Walker was following the incident, warning “Scott cannot be at a fundraiser or something like that. He’ll be eaten alive.”
 Fortunately, the Walker campaigned dodged a bullet and Scott Walker was surprisingly NOT at a fundraiser and was able to go start doing campaign damage control within the hour:

Walker's cellphone battery had died; within an hour, Gilkes assured Russell and others that Walker had arrived at the accident scene.

"He needs to lead and be on top of the entire situation," Gilkes reported. "ALL of us need to back him up and ensure he is on top of the entire situation — Scott needs to be front and center for the media.
At least Scott Walker was alive unlike Jared Kellner who was the victim of Walker's lack of interest in actually governing.   

 Yesterday a 30 foot wide concrete wall fell from the County parking garage near Summerfest, fatally injuring a 15 year old boy and injuring two others. This was a case where a death could have been avoided had Walker paid more attention to governing, and less attention to politicking.

The parking garage under O’Donnell park has had structural problems for years — almost since the day it was built. Past County Executives have dedicated sufficient funds to maintain the structure and assure safety for the public. Sadly, O’Donnell Park was named after former County Executive Bill O’Donnell who did pay attention to County infrastructure and yes, he did raise taxes to pay for County needs and ensure public safety. It has always struck me as being an unfitting memorial to name an ailing parking garage after a former giant in County politics.

Walker has chosen to neglect the garage infrastructure to save money so he can position himself as champion of the taxpayer for his run for Governor. Of course Walker had to use this tragedy as an opportunity to grab a little media attention for himself. In an interview near the O’Donnell parking garage Walker said, “For me, personally, obviously it rips my heart out”… For a man who has built his career on doing as little as possible to keep government providing services and infrastructure, his claim that it “rips my heart out” rings hollow. With chunks of concrete falling from other County buildings and with neglected maintenance needs, this tragedy was entirely predictable.

Tonight there are two parents who have lost a son because Walker has decided that politics is more important than safety.
Scott Walker made this a campaign issue before the body was cold, as he had his campaign staff take over the PR, so much so that the actual Milwaukee County Chief of Staff, that was paid by the taxpayers, to actually handle situations like this, had to re-introduce himself to the campaign staff(in a series of private email conversations). 

Earlier this year, Walker's spokesman emphasized that most of the contact between Walker's top campaign and county aides dealt with "routine" matters.
In the new emails, Gilkes is often directing Walker's county staff on what to do.
Tom Nardelli, Walker's county chief of staff, became so frustrated that he wrote to Walker and his top county aides on July 8, 2010, and felt compelled to remind them that he was still chief of staff.
“Just in case anyone cares what I think as COS, let me assure you all that Open Records Requests will be handled as they have always been handled: Timely, courteously and with the detail Corporation Counsel requires both upon receipt and upon release.”
“Any questions?” Nardelli wrote. "Direct them to me in this office only!”
He signed the email: "Tom Nardelli, Chief of Staff (remember?)."

To late Keith Gilkes was running the show and readers of our blog know who Keith Gilkes is.   Gilkes is the person who runs from the press and his one claim to fame, is that he ORDERED everyone on Walkers staff to delete anything that might make Scott Walker look bad in the wake of the death of a 15 year old child.  

See these "special people" never ever asknowledged that a 15 year child died,  They did not acknowledge that a human being was dead, crushed in front of his parents, and he did not have to be.  It was Scott Walker that they wanted to make sure went unscathed, everyone else is collateral damage.  What is the life of a 15 year old when we are talking an ascendency to the Presidency here.    

Walker when asked softballs about the revelations that we actually have on paper says :

 "In the midst of the campaign, I didn't want that very tragic situation to evolve into a political issue," Walker said.

That would be like an alcoholic drinking because he does not want to be tempted to drink.  His campaign staff was leaping into action before the family could even be notified so that excuse is weak.   We can however take Walker's word that his campaign staff does not run the state the way they ran the county.

  In his press briefing, Walker said he does not let his current campaign team call the shots for his gubernatorial staff on state issues.
 I mean if Scott Walker says it, it has to be true...right?

Another interesting tidbit that came out of these emails, is that they knew that they had an ace in the hole.  they knew that Journal Sentinel reporter Jesse Garza, would  help Scott Walker get "good ink".  

In another email, Russell wrote Journal Sentinel reporter Jesse Garza had gotten a message to him that he was willing to help Walker get “good ink” if the county exec wanted to speak with the reporter.

It takes a very special person to hear about the tragic death of a 15 year old, and your first thought is "how will this effect my campaign".   

Scott Walker and his staff are very special. 

His father must be so ashamed.   

Read all of the emails here!

Abele Steers The Bus Straight For The Cliff

For nearly 40 years, Milwaukee Transit System (MTS) has been the non-profit agency that has been contracted to run the Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS), including the paratransit program.  During that time, MTS has received rewards for their performance and was held as a standard for other mass transit programs around the country.

Due to reductions in federal and state funding as well as poor budgeting by former County Executive Scott Walker, MCTS has seen fare hikes and more than 20% cut in services over the past ten years.  To address the dwindling funding, there was a referendum in the fall of 2008 on whether there should be a 1% sales tax dedicated to the transit system, the parks system and the emergency medical system..

Despite Walker's vehement opposition to the sales tax, the referendum passed.  Unfortunately, then Governor Jim Doyle and his fellow Democrats couldn't get their act together to follow the will of the people and the dedicated funding source did not come to be.

It doesn't look like the dedicated funding source will come to be any time soon either. Milwaukee County Emperor Chris Abele has expressed that he is opposed to any such sales tax.  (Although he is all for one to build a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks.  Yes, Abele things poor people don't need ways to work, but he is willing to spend our tax money on a multimillion dollar arena for a team of multimillionaire players on a team owned by a multimillionaire so that Abele, a multimillionaire himself, can watch the games.  Do you think he might be just a tad out of touch with the people?)

In March 2013, it was reported that the county would be on the hook for nearly $9 million due to a clerical error regarding the bidding process for the paratransit services.  Abele immediately blamed MTS and said that the was going to put their contract out for bid as well.  What Abele didn't want people to know is that MTS has a pretty solid paper trail of all the attempts to contact Abele's staff about this pending issue.  Unfortunately for all involved, the staff that MTS was trying to contact, including DPW Director Frank Busalacchi, were busy being fired by Abele in the midst of one of his frequent temper tantrums.

It is fairly apparent that Abele wanted to make sure that MTS did not get the contract, so that they could renegotiate the paratransit contracts and cut the cost of his temper tantrum.

On Monday - in a story broken by Lisa Kaiser of the Shepherd Express - we learned that MTS, despite their decades of excellence, did not get the contract.  Instead, Abele announced that the contract was going to MV Transportation, a for profit company based in Dallas, Texas.

As one might expect from anything Abele does, there are problems with both the procedure that he used to chose the company as well as with the company itself.

When the county sends out a request for proposals (RFP), it usually consists of sending out a scope of what they are looking for and companies send in proposals for the job, quoting a price that they want to do the work.  The county then weighs the proposals on cost, reputation of the company, etc.  Once a decision is made, the information is given to the board, along with the other proposals, is offered to the Board who screens it again and approves the deal.  Once the county executive signs it, the contract is set.

Under Abele's screwed up plan, the county told the companies how much they had to spend and asked the companies to submit proposals on what they could do for that much money.  These proposals were supposedly reviewed by a "panel of experts in the industry" that are independent of the County Emperor's office.  But no one knows who these experts are and their identities are being kept secret, as are the other proposals.  Something tells me that those "experts" came from the Greater Milwaukee Committee and/or the Public Policy Forum.

It is only now that Abele is trying to strike a contract with MV Transportation.

During the negotiations, they are keeping the whole bidding process under wraps so that the public can't know if it is a legitimate deal or another one of Abele's sketchy stunts.  By using this method, Abele has put the county over a barrel.  If the contract talks fall through, the other bidders are not going to be interested in getting involved with such shadiness.  So now Abele managed to put MV Transportation with the power in the negotiations.

MV Transportation has acted as if they will be glad to take on the current drivers of ATU 998 and honor their contract, which was just entered last month.

Their track record shows that this is anything but the reality of how they operate.

A quick Google search shows a history of labor struggles in almost every community they have been involved, including Reno, Santa Clarita, New York City and Chicago.  In Fairfield, California, MV Transportation refused to pay their drivers for hours worked, prompting a federal law suit.

It's not only Labor who has had issues with MV Transportation.

In Fairfield, the city officials had to fine the company hundreds of times because they failed so miserably:
Between 2008 and 2010, the company was fined 295 times by local transit officials for poor performance, including too many accidents, missed bus runs and late buses.

The use of private contractors has grown dramatically in California. Contractors ran 223 million miles of bus and train service in the state in 2011, a 42 percent increase in a decade, according to the National Transit Database. Last year, they picked up 166 million riders in California, up 29 percent. Government-run public transit systems still carried far more riders last year with 1.2 billion, a slight dip from a decade ago.
The article goes on to describe not only labor struggles, but poor performance with buses running late, buses not making stops at all, and unsafe driving. The article also notes that they have a high rate of accidents including one fatal accident when the bus driver failed to yield the right away.

The article also reports that there has been a lot of pay for play and alleges that MV Transportation has tried to influence local elections, then going straight to those elected officials to complain about getting fined instead of through the proper channels. This kind of manipulation and corruption is what probably appealed most to Abele. He recognized a common soul in their method of operation.

Most telling is this part of the article, a sentiment shared by Milwaukee County SupervisorJohn Weishan on numerous occasions:
“If you had a contractor that wanted to run the business and not maximize their profit at every turn, then it would be fine,” Fink said. “As it tends to work out, you’re spending 85 percent of the time making sure that they’re doing everything in the contract instead of doing the things you need to be doing, like getting grant money doing transit planning.”
In summary, Emperor Abele has a tantrum and fires the top four people in DPW, which leads to a bungling of paratransit contracts which could cost taxpayers up to $9 million. To cover up and correct his error, Abele decides to go from a local, nonprofit company with a stellar record to an out of state, for profit company with a long history of screwing over workers, strikes and poor performance.

And Abele thinks that this is a good thing. And he expects the County Board to just approve what he puts in front of them without knowing whether this is the best bid or even if it was done legally. It sure seems to me that the county is being exposed to another costly lawsuit, thanks to Abele.

Gee, isn't it great that the state granted Abele's power grab. Imagine how nuts things would be if we had adults running the county instead of Abele.

Scott Walker - Unintimidated: The Sequel!

We brought you the original Unintimidated last week, and now Scott Walker has given us a sequel! 

H/T Jenna Pope and Former Madison School Board Member Carol Carstensen(and the Capitol Police for this great photo op):

Once, Scott Walker clears the streets and the Capitol of women over 80, it might even be safe enough for him to come back to Wisconsin and actually spend some time here.  


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Thanks Dave!


By Jeff Simpson

Yesterday, Dave Blaska, part of the new era of "conservatives", felt that the best way to petition the government was ask for their permission to do so, THEN go where and when they were told, and sing their praises! Blaska, who the news shows could not give enough airtime too, was able to prove his points perfectly!  Unfortunately for Blaska, the point he proved was not the one he was going for!

Let's start with the arrest.

Photo: This man was arrested around 3:30pm EST in the Wisconsin State Capitol for holding a sign that read, "Article 1, Section 4." The sign said that, and nothing more.

Article 1 Section 4 of the Wisconsin State Constitution reads as follows: "The right of the people peaceably to assemble, to consult for the common good, and to petition the government, or any department thereof, shall never be abridged."

Cognitive dissonance is dissonant.

This unnamed man was arrested for SILENTLY holding a sign that read simply - "Article 1, Section 4." 
Not only was he alone holding the sign, the letters on the sign did not reach the 20 member threshhold.  Yet he was arrested and hauled away in handcuffs.  YEs - HAULED AWAY IN HANDCUFFS.   Proving that what gets you arrested is NOT  not getting a permit but instead saying something that the PArty Leader does not want to hear(or read).  


Article 1 Section 4 of the Wisconsin State Constitution reads as follows: "The right of the people peaceably to assemble, to consult for the common good, and to petition the government, or any department thereof, shall never be abridged."

Secondly, Blaska  tried to have radio personality Sly Sylvester arrested for asking him a simple question!

Dave how do you like your state funded pension? 

See Dave Blaska is a former elected official and state worker.  You pay his pension.  YOU pay for him to be able to run around the state and do childish pranks in the name of Scott Walker.  YOU pay for him to have numerous forums to talk about how horrible it is that YOU one day will be getting a pension!   Dave has never offered to give a penny back on his state funded pension, see unlike YOU he earned his.

Apparently once you take out a permit you decide who can and can not be in the Capitol and what they will be doing.  An hour's worth of power must have been all consuming for Blaska!  It is nice that we have three police agencies spending time at the Capitol, its not like they have anything else they can be doing.    It is more important that we keep the police in Madison to make sure Scott Walker or Dave Blaska's feeling never get hurt!   It's only tax dollars, its not like they have to pay for it!

Unforrtunately, the one person NOT arrested was this republican thug!  

As is the theme for this blog, BUT wait there's more:  While never being overly creative, the right decided the best way to prove a point was to sing thinly veiledracist hateful silly songs (badly I might add):

But WAIT, There's more.   It appears that Mr. Blaska was giving out twinkies to participants!  I will give Dave the benefit of the doubt in that I am sure he was making a political statement and not judging his peers.
 Blaska’s event lasted about a half hour, after which he handed out Twinkies to celebrate “American resilience.”
 Lets take a look at what Twinkies "celebrates", which is everything that the republican party loves!  

*   Corporate greed

*   Unemployed Americans

*    Misperception and Lies from the right to push an agenda

*   Corporations giving you less for more money

*   Jobs outsourced 

*   Sh*t food! 

I always say that when people tell us who they are, we should listen!

Yesterday David Blaska and the modern day Wisconsin "conservatives(term used very loosely)" spoke volumes!   

PS: Want to know whats wrong with Wisconsin?  Today on WKOW Wake Up Wisconsin, Blaska received about 6-10 minutes an hour of TV time, Wisconsin Ride for Kids was afforded a whole two minutes!  

Nuff' Said!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Glenn Greenwald - Hypocrite Extraordinare

Not much hasn't been said about Glenn Greenwald lately. You might know him as the guy who helped Edward Snowden (who is as phony as a three dollar bill) "leak" information that the government was spying on us. Here's an FYI for you, Glenn. Americans have known since Watergate that the government spies on us. What you 'leaked' wasn't anything that we didn't already know. Alas, some say he's a hero. Some think he's a traitor. He's this, he's that. But personally, I think it's safe to say he's nothing more but a Grade A hypocrite.

Also, if you ask him a legitimate question, he gets really defensive.

First, let me state that, yes, of course as an American, you have the right to free speech. Hate speech is considered free speech. That's not what this is about. Mr. Greenwald is a civil rights lawyer by trade, which I find pretty hilarious due to one of his most prominent cases being that he defended Matthew Hale, a white supremacist who was found guilty of seeking out someone to murder a federal judge. You can read in depth on the case here. And not only is Greenwald's defense of Hale sickening in and of itself, the trouble he got himself into as his lawyer should really tell you just what kind of person he is.

Racial supremacy is, in my opinion, the height of fascism. As we know, fascism doesn't allow for civil rights for anyone but a certain group of people. How can Mr. Greenwald have the guts to pass himself off as the savoir of our rights as Americans, while defending someone who wants to wipe away and deny rights to entire groups of people? I'm sad to say that he's duped many people on the left into thinking he cares about them or anyone else.

I asked a question and it resorted to an insinuation that I apparently dislike the First Amendment. Pretty typical when you have someone backed into a corner they don't know how to get out of. And the link he sent me was a story about the ACLU defending neo-nazis on the grounds of free speech. Again, no one is denying anyone their free speech. My gripe is with the hypocritical nonsense he spews.

Hopefully this opens many people's eyes to the kind of person Greenwald truly is.

Knot Courageous(at all)!

Q.  Ever wonder why the group from Knot My Wisconsin (gnatsies) work at staying anonymous?

A.  Because if this is how you act in public, you would also!

Besides it is not like he needs to ask anyone what its like to be a douche!

This is the Wisconsin that Scott Walker has brought you, these are the people that Scott Walker has empowered!

Because We Can Trust Corporations To Police Themselves

Remember when Scott Walker tried to reassure us that it was OK to deregulate the state by saying it would create jobs and that we could trust companies to police themselves?

Yeah, neither do the people in Burlington:
OSHA fines Echo Lake Foods $150,000 after 27 safety violations found at Burlington and Franksville, Wis., frozen food production plants
And the people that used to work there are still waiting for their new jobs.

Emperor Abele, Petty Tyrant, Strikes Again

Milwaukee County Emperor Chris Abele has again shown his pettiness and insecurity:
The abrupt departure of the head of Milwaukee County's minority contracting office drew criticism from county supervisors, who said the move appeared to be payback by County Executive Chris Abele.

Nelson Soler held the post for just short of one year. He was appointed by County Board Chairwoman Marina Dimitrijevic to run the county's Community Development Business Partners office after the former head was arrested and accused of taking a kickback and approving a phony contract.

Freida Webb was charged with four felonies last month.

Soler was credited by supervisors with improving the county's program for cultivating women- and minority-owned firms.

He drew criticism from Abele's administration in May for backing a plan to limit eligibility for a small-business assistance program to firms with gross income of $4 million a year or less.

Abele favored broadening the program to include businesses making up to about $22 million.

Soler's replacement, Ruben Anthony Jr., was announced Friday with only scant mention of Soler.

"The county executive and I would also like to thank Nelson Soler for his service to Milwaukee County," a letter from county administrative services director Don Tyler said.

Abele's staff declined to discuss the reason for Soler's departure.
The article goes on to say that Abele might have fired Soler because of the fact that Soler didn't kiss his butt. It could also be that Abele fired him because he wanted to get revenge on the County Board for firing Kimberly Walker, the former head of Corp Counsel. The difference is that there was ample evidence that Walker was corrupt and inept, while Abele offers no explanation on his firing of Soler, other than he could because of the plutocratic take over.

Of course, this is just the latest in a long line of firings by Abele, most of them done without explanation or a valid reason.  The growing list includes:

It's interesting to note what happen shortly after the firings.  

Three months after Abele fired Burton, the courthouse catches fire.  A year after Abele fired Black, Abele can't find vendors to work the beer gardens.  A few months after firing Busalacchi, county taxpayers get put on the hook for an extra $9 million due to mishandled contracts.  After Lucey leaves, the mental health complex fails audits by the feds and the state and it is learned that Abele is trying to dump our most vulnerable citizens into unsafe situations.  And after Farley is fired, the next director of administration starts threatening and trying to boss elected officials.

Y'know,  for someone that keeps touting the desire for efficiency, he's the most inefficient person I've ever seen.

The Koch Machine In The Courthouse

American Majority is a right wing front group, much like Americans for Prosperity or Club for Growth, who take money from people and groups like the Koch Brothers and the Sam Adams Alliance and launder it through to groups like Media Trackkkers.

And we all know that Media Trackkkers has a deplorable track record when it comes to reporting on anything.  Some of their best work included, "Oh my God, black people are voting!" and "McCarthyism is the way news should be handled."  And who could forget how Mr. Media Trackkkers, Brian Sikma, lied his face off about an alleged assault which never even occurred.  He was lying so bad that Charlie "I got nothing" Sykes was calling him out on it.

So obviously, American Majority is more worried about advancing their corporate agenda rather than tell the truth.

This is pretty well evidence by an article from the American Majority blog about Milwaukee County Supervisor Deanna Alexander, which should be categorized as fictional (or even farcical).

Deanna Alexander and
her boss, Emperor Abele
The article, which one can take as a early introduction into Alexander's aspiration to move on to a higher office, stumbles over itself quickly when it contradicts itself quickly.  In the first paragraph, they try to portray Alexander as some sort of reluctant hero (emphasis mine):
What prompts everyday Americans citizens to run for office to better their communities?  For Deanna Alexander, a mother of two in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, it happened when she attended her first Neighborhood Watch meeting and heard about an opening on the Milwaukee County Board and saw no one else was interested.
But just a few paragraphs later, they admit there was considerable interest:
Deanna not only won her three-way primary on February 21, 2012 with 42% of the vote, but she was elected to her position on April 3, 2012 with a solid majority (55%). But an independent thinker, who regularly seeks out her constituents’ perspectives, was not what the rest of the Milwaukee County Board was expecting. Deanna was placed on the powerful Finance, Personnel, and Audit Committee and ruffled feathers when she voted against a simple budget provision that would result in raised taxes, something she had promised her voters she would oppose.
So which one is true?  Was there no one but Alexander or was there at least three, forcing a primary?
Obviously, the answer is the latter.

The rest of this work of fiction was the conflation of her doing the bidding of Milwaukee County Emperor Chris Abele and making it seem like they were honorable deeds as they tried to build her up for a future campaign.

The one thing of interest is that the blog reports that Alexander attended one of their brainwashing education seminars about six months before the election.  Maybe that is where she learned it's easier to give up integrity and independent thought in exchange for campaign donations and other gifts.

Sources say that Alexander is planning on taking on State Representative LaTonya Johnson, who won her last election with 84.7% of the vote.

In preparation for that, Alexander has already been sending out feelers and drawing lines in the sand.

One of Alexander's early positions was her anti-gay rights stance.  To show her dedication to opposing equality, she drove dozens of miles to eat her fill of crappy chicken sammiches.  Such intestinal fortitude.

She also takes the corporate line of being against women's rights, going as far as accusing Texas' Wendy Davis of wanting to kill babies:

Next she'll be accusing Davis of eating babies too.

We also can't forget what a useful tool Alexander is when she allowed Emperor Abele's spokesman to put words in her mouth.  Then again, she did get richly rewarded by Abele and his fellow plutocrats at the Greater Milwaukee Committee when she actually had the County Board do a Suspension of the Rules so she could vote the way her boss wanted her to.  To round off her trifecta of ethically challenged missteps, she is now taking free legal services from a Bradley Foundation-sponsored firm.

These are things that make American Majority and Chris Abele appreciate Alexander so much.  She's just like a Koch machine.  You stick some money in, make a selection and she'll spit out a corrupted vote or play the useful stooge.

One might have thought that Alexander would have been bright enough to notice that selling your vote and selling out your constituents isn't very popular, as her good friends Jason Fields and Joe Rice could attest.  Then again, one might have also been overestimating her intelligence.

At least if she does choose to run, we will have the comic relief candidate for next year.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Question of the Day

Does anyone else wonder if the sudden and extreme crackdown on the Solidarity Singers is to distract the public's attention to the misdeeds going on at the Penokee iron mine?

I've noticed no one has anything about this since the crackdowns at the Capitol started.

Fox News Exposes the Mooslems....

By Jeff Simpson

Watch this interview and tell me your not embarrassed at the stupidity of former beauty queen Lauren Green and anyone who works for Fox News:  I hope that Reza Aslan has the sense to never go on Fox News(term used loosely) again!  PS: His book looks pretty good!

Full Interview here!

I can just imagine the conversation right now:

Jesus:  You gave them free will and the best they could come up with was Fox News?

God:  Very disappointing isn't it!  

Jesus: Don't send me back there for a long time!

God:  Let's check and see how Tim Tebow is doing.  

Lauren Green gives Miss South Carolina hope!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Protect American Workers, Protect American Jobs Rally

Click to embiggen

Who is afraid of Emerge Wisconsin?

From the inbox comes this press release by Wendy Strout, Executive Director of Emerge Wisconsin:
Emerge Wisconsin recently learned they were the subject of an open records request by the Republican Party of Wisconsin. The request appeared to be targeting the Emerge Wisconsin Alumnae. There are currently eight Emerge women who are serving in the state legislature: Representatives Penny Bernard Schaber‘07, Jill Billings‘11, Dianne Hesselbein‘09, La Tonya Johnson‘12, Melissa Sargent‘12, Mandy Wright‘12, JoCasta Zamarripa’10, and Senator Nikiya Harris‘11.

“It is interesting that the GOP are targeting Emerge Wisconsin, an organization focused on training Democratic women to run for office,” states Wendy Strout, Emerge Wisconsin Executive Director. “Since they have a history of attacking women’s rights, it was only a matter of time before they started attacking women’s ability to run for office. 
Emerge Wisconsin recently graduated their seventh class of Democratic women ready to run for elected office. The goal of Emerge is to increase the number of Democratic women in office. They do this by inspiring women to run and honing their skills to win. Emerge is also traveling the state providing a “Taste” of their trainings in counties like Brown, Door, and St. Croix. 
Since 2007, Emerge has been the premier training program for Democratic women in Wisconsin. Emerge recruits and trains women from across the state to run for office on a local, state, and national level and provides them with the tools and network support needed to succeed in the world of politics. Emerge graduates have gone on to win races ranging from Village Trustee to State Senate. Nationally, Emerge has expanded to thirteen states to train the next generation of female Democratic leaders across the country. Emerge is located in Arizona, California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Virginia and Wisconsin
This attack by WISGOP was undoubtedly spurred by this article touting the success of Emerge Wisconsin in getting women elected:
“In many ways running a campaign is like starting a small business,” Wright said. “Emerge really helped me organize the campaign. You have to be pretty motived, and Emerge really helped me with that. The networking is also helpful. There were 30 of us in class and 10 that ran for Assembly or Senate, so we kept in touch. It was really, really helpful to hear, ‘I ran into this problem and this is how I problem-solved it’.”

“We have women all across the state in all levels of office,” said Wendy Strout, executive director of Emerge Wisconsin.

The Emerge program began in California and now is one of 13 states with Emerge programs. Emerge Wisconsin has been in operation since 2007. Since then 56 percent of the graduates have run for public office and 59 percent have run successful campaigns.

“Women across the country are not happy with what’s going on. They are looking for a way to make a change. So you’re going to see women across the country getting more active,” Strout said. “Our goal is to continue increasing the number of Democratic women at all levels of government. We are nowhere near 50 percent of elected officials, yet women are 50 percent of the population, or 51 percent of the population in some places.”
The reporter, as any good reporter would do, contacted WISGOP to get a statement from them. As one might expect, it showed just how out of touch they are with women and women's issues:
Of course, Republicans also want to provide more opportunities for female candidates. Jesse Dougherty, press secretary
 of the Republican Party of Wisconsin, said Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefish is leading the charge to bring more Republican women into public office.

“We are holding training sessions across the state and women are a major aspect of that training,” Dougherty said. “Women will have a strong voice in our party.”
Obviously, what woman wouldn't want to be involved with a party who wants to keep their pay substantially lower than men's and wants to have a doctor sexually assault them with a ultrasound wand? The only things that the Republicans haven't done - yet - is pass a law that women must remain pregnant and barefoot in the kitchen.

But as they say, haters are going to hate. And there is not a more hateful group than the Teapublicans and one of the things they hate most are strong women who will stand up for themselves.

For the purpose of full disclosure, I do work for Emerge Wisconsin and am damn proud of it. However, this post is not to be in any construed as anything but coming from me.

Dave Blaska's Trollidarity Squawkalong

Dave Blaska, right wing blowhard and glorified troll, thinks he is going to make a point against the Solidarity
I got a permit!
Singers by holding his own Trollidarity Squawkalong on Monday during the lunch hour.  He's even has a permit for it!
Sing patriotic songs like America the Beautiful and fun songs like Gilligan's Island and Flintstones. Show Wisconsin what respect for free speech looks -- and sounds -- like. Because the permit system assures everyone can have access to their Capitol and WE GOT A PERMIT!
Word is that Americans for Prosperity are busing in Teapublicans from Illinois so that they can reach 20 people to make the permit worthwhile.

And they are sure going to show us, because nothing says Free Speech like asking permission from Dear Leader to use it.  I wouldn't be surprised if Blaska already has a song list from Mike Huebsch.

I would hope and expect that the Solidarity Singers will hold with tradition and move outside as they have done any other time there as been a permitted event inside.

I mean, just because Blaska is the permit holder and thus is legally responsible for any and all costs associated with his event, whether or not it was his fault, should be no reason for any of the singers to stoop to their level and disrupt their squawking.

Walker's Malfeasance Goes For A Song

For those who have been reading my reporting about Scott Walker dating back to his time in Milwaukee County is fully aware that one of his predominant traits is the need to overreach is authority in order to get his way, whether it's to reward a campaign donor, advance his political career or punish his political  enemies.  With the help of the corporate media, he has all too often been able to get away with such malfeasance.

But even the most powerful corporate media in the state can do little to spin away Walker's latest acts of
Image courtesy of
Sarah Mittermaier
malfeasance - his vain efforts to stifle the people who participate in the Solidarity Singalong.

My colleague in dissidence, Jeff Simpson, has been doing a yeoman's work in covering the abuse of authority going on in the state capitol.  You can find his excellent coverage here, here, also here, there, this one and that one.

As the gentle reader is probably aware, Walker has sent Commandant Dave Erwin and his jackboots into the Capitol's rotunda to arrest octogenarians, veterans, mothers with children, the disabled, friars and reverends. They even arrested journalists and onlookers.

One of the acts of suppression that I have personally found most egregious involves a friend of Cognitive Dissidence, the good Reverend Carter Dary, who is also running for the 13th Wisconsin Assembly District. Not only did Walker's goons arrest the good reverend, but also were neglectful towards him as he was having an apparent cardiac incident:
The minister, a gentle man named Rev. Carter Dary, sits in his zip tie cuffs, says he isn't feeling well, is having chest pains. Nitro, nitro… this man needs his nitro! He's not well, and he needs his nitro. The policeman in charge of collaring and cuffing errant Lutheran clergy put it in his palm. But he's handcuffed, see, and he can't get the pill into his mouth. He fumbles, but the pill doesn't reach its target. Too many zip ties are in the way. The policeman puts it under his tongue for him, like some weird reverse benediction. Things seem better. Rev. Dary tells the policeman that he has no family or friends to be contacted, and the policeman leaves the processing room.

But then the soft spoken Reverend suddenly slumps where he sits, head against a pillar, eyes closed. A woman next to him, also in detainment tries to nudge him. He doesn't move. She yells for the police. Irving, stalwart Solidarity Singer already arrested too many times to count, also sits next to him in detainment. The police come and try to get the Reverend to respond. The police finally call EMS. It takes forever for the ambulance to arrive. Everyone waits and waits, Mr. Dary inert, folded over like too much laundry. Irving and the woman who nudged Mr. Dary, begin to recite the Lord's Prayer out loud. They think the Reverend is dying. The police, tell them to be quiet, to quit praying out loud. The police try to stop them from praying out loud to a semi conscious minister! They continue reciting the Lord's Prayer. Five to ten minutes after they call the ambulance, the police take the Reverend's handcuffs off.

Perhaps an ordained minister apparently having a cardiac event might be trusted to not run off? The police try to ascertain his condition. Can he recite scripture? He only gets out the first line of the Lord's Prayer.
Follow the link to see a video of Reverend Dary talk about how police had refused to allow him to offer guidance to the political prisoners of the day before as well as an eyewitness account of the unforgivable neglect by the troopers.

And make no mistake about it. The people that Walker is having arrested are political prisoners.  They have committed no crime, unless one, - like Walker does - thinks that exercising the Freedom of Speech is a criminal behavior.

In fact, the Madison National Lawyers Guild has sent out a pres release basically pointing out that Walker was overstepping his authority and purposely misinterpreting a court order in order to practice this particularly act of fascism (emphasis mine, for obvious reasons):
Citizens singing traditional civil rights songs, some with lyrics rewritten to criticize the current governor and state legislative priorities, were again subjected to mass arrest in the Wisconsin
Capitol Rotunda July 24 and July 25. After U.S. District Court Judge William Conley issued an injunction against enforcement of the Wisconsin Administrative Code and Capitol Access policies on
July 8, the Wisconsin Department of Administration tried to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in their ongoing campaign to stifle voices of dissent in the Capitol. Twenty three people were arrested Wednesday, and another twenty or so on Thursday, some more than once, while hundreds sang along or looked on, including a number of Democratic state legislators.

Dept. of Administration Secretary Michael Huebsch, announcing the impending arrests on Wednesday, which included two people aged 80 and over and two journalists, claimed that the state was “enforcing” Judge Conley’s ruling, as if the judge had directed arrests. The decision issued in the lawsuit filed against Huebsch and Capitol Police Chief David Erwin did not direct arrests. Nor did it find that the state’s permitting scheme was constitutional, despite such claims by DOA spokesperson Stephanie Marquise.

An injunction was issued because the court determined that the permitting scheme was improperly content based and overly broad, and that the plaintiff Michael Kissick had shown a likelihood of success in his case against Huebsch and Erwin. One of Kissick’s attorneys, Larry Dupuis of the A.C.L.U. of Wisconsin, issued a press release condemning the misrepresentation of Judge Conley’s ruling by Secretary Huebsch and the DOA’s media handlers.

“Rather than impose a blanket prohibition on enforcing the existing permitting scheme, however, the court will preliminarily enjoin defendants from (1) distinguishing based on the content of the speech between “rallies” and other events for permitting purposes inside the Capitol and (2) enforcing the permit requirement for gatherings expected to draw 20 or fewer persons inside the Capitol rotunda itself. Of course, nothing in this decision prohibits enforcement of existing laws and regulations that restrict disruptive noise or other disorderly conduct,” wrote Judge Conley granting the injunction against enforcement of the rules as rewritten by the DOA on an “emergency” basis in April, 2013.

Image courtesy of
Sarah Mittermaier
All the singers and others present arrested Wednesday were charged with violating an administrative code provision that describes what kind of activity would justify a declaration of an “unlawful event” by Capitol Police. Yet no access was blocked to any part of the building, and no violence, threats of violence or any interference with the operations of state government during the lunch hour singing was observed during the event, which has continued for over two years every weekday in or outside the Capitol. The tickets merely listed “No Permit” as the basis for getting a citation, and when citizens asked why they were being arrested, Capitol police, state troopers and DNR wardens told them they would “find out downstairs,” but no further explanation was offered. Agents of the Wisconsin Dept. of Justice Criminal Investigations unit were called in to help process the large number of people arrested.

The Madison Mass Defense group, involving attorney and legal worker members of the National Lawyers Guild, ACLU and others concerned about federal and state constitutional rights to petition and protest the government, has represented most of the 40 defendants given over 160 tickets in the “crackdown” ordered by Capitol Police Chief Erwin since he became chief a year ago. Only one case has gone to a jury trial resulting in a guilty verdict, and over 70 cases have been dismissed by the prosecuting Wisconsin Attorney General’s office or denied prosecution by the Dane County District Attorney. An appeal is pending in the Court of Appeals which may result in the state being ordered to pay the defendants’ attorneys’ fees if the prosecutions were not “substantially justified.”

Anyone needing legal assistance for arrests while singing or observing singing at the Capitol can call the NLG at 608-520-0654. The coordinator will then attempt to find legal representation for the person who has been arrested.

The Madison Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild is the local arm of the national organization of lawyers, legal workers, law students, and jailhouse lawyers. The National Lawyers Guild represents
progressive political movements, and its motto is that human rights are more sacred than property interests.
And yes, again, they are political prisoners. They are being arrested for singing the truth to power. They are being arrested because Dear Leader Walker doesn't like them pointing out his failures and corruption.

Ironically, Walker's overreach and malfeasance does more damage to himself than anything the singers could hope to accomplish.

Yes, Virginia, Unions Are Still Very Much Needed

Sometimes, other people say things so well, one can only point the gentle reader to their words.  This is one of those times:
Contrary to the notion in the Journal Sentinel July 23 editorial that Act 10 means public employee unions "lost many of their reasons for being," Wisconsin's lagging economy since Act 10 underscores exactly why these unions are needed more than ever.

Gov. Scott Walker set out to drive down the standard of living for the hundreds of thousands of Wisconsin citizens who provide public services. He succeeded and, in doing so, took the rest of the state down the drain.

Since Walker took office and immediately "dropped the bomb" on thousands of nurses, teachers, snowplow drivers and janitors, Wisconsin has trailed our neighbors and the national average for job growth. In fact, for most of Walker's time in office, Wisconsin has ranked near the bottom in job creation.

This should be no surprise. Wisconsin's public employees, who work and live in every corner of the state, have lost about $1 billion a year in buying power as a result of Act 10. Unlike wealthier people who have the option of putting a big chunk of their earnings into savings or foreign investments, most hourly workers put most of what they make immediately back into the local economy.

In a consumer society like ours, Walker's austerity policies throw a wet blanket on economic activity. As researcher Jack Norman noted recently about Walker's latest state budget, which doubles down on failed policies: "Wisconsin needed a stimulus. The governor fed us a sedative instead."

Without unions to advocate for fair compensation, safe working conditions and job advancement based on what you know, not who you know, workers have no way to fight back against the lavishly funded corporate agenda of anti-worker politicians such as Walker. This hurts everyone.

As Marquette University professor Paul Secunda noted in this newspaper, Walker's attack on unions went far beyond fiscal concerns. It included punitive measures designed specifically to undermine unions, such as requiring unions to waste resources on annual recertification battles while making certification practically meaningless.

But, like so many of Walker's policies, this just takes us backward to an earlier time.
Read the whole thing here (JSOnline pay wall).

Quote of the Day


By Jeff Simpson

Joe Sanfelippo, You know the guy who so many on the left want to jump on his end democracy in Milwaukee County as we know it bill, had this to say about the Solidarity Singers:

"It’s sad when a person feels their life is so empty and meaningless that the highlight of their day is to invade an otherwise peaceful capital every noon hour and raise a raucous in the rotunda. If these attention-starved individuals really wanted to contribute something helpful to society, they would spend their days volunteering in soup kitchens or homeless shelters rather than putting on infantile demonstrations for public gratification. Then again, helping people that really need it wouldn’t attract the TV cameras and news reporters that these individuals so desperately crave."
Here is the actual press release from Rep. Sanfelippo(spelling errors and all)

I called Representative Sanfelippo's office, and was told that if I emailed my questions, he would answer me.  I am guessing that they were busy volunteering at the homeless shelter(or writing poorly worded silly press releases).

My list of question for Joe, were these:

* When was the last time YOU volunteered at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen?
 *  Have you ever felt such things about lobbyists who are perpetually in your office and meeting with you?
*  Would you afford the same amount of meeting time with MS. Kemble as you do Convicted felon Scott Jensen?
* Do you think that that the $34,000 people have given you could be better used to help the homeless or for food shelters? 
*  Do you think that the $202,972 That convicted felon Scott Jensen earned as a lobbyist OR that the  $2,392,000 that the Walton funded, public school attacking, American Federation for Children spent trying to privatize our public education could have been better spent at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen?   That buys ALOT of soup(about 2.4 Million cans). I am guessing that $2.4 Million is more than the budget of the Dane County Food Pantry AND Homeless Shelters combined!  
Maybe you will have better luck getting an answer - <>;

By the way, Sanfelippo's quote sounds eerily like another quote from someone who did not like when the peasants revolted - , "for daring and desperate is the spirit of those leaders".

The King would have been proud!

Courthouse Proud!

On Saturday, July 6, there was a massive fire at the Milwaukee County Courthouse which started when the very old and out of code electrical infrastructure started on fire.  Since the fire, Milwaukee County Emperor Chris Abele has been doing his best to control the message and the spin so that people don't focus on the cost of the clean up and repairs, the risk he is putting people in by opening parts of the courthouse too soon and the fact that the fire stemmed from his deferred maintenance and willful failure to replace the faulty equipment even though he had been warned of the danger.

While Abele is trying to come off as transparent and working real hard to fix the problem, there are things that he is omitting, besides the fact that he is responsible for the damage and added expense to the taxpayers.
Some of the highlights he somehow fails to mention include:

  • People involved in the risk management field have said that if the fire had occurred at any other time than a holiday weekend, people would have probably died,
  • Abele's Director of Risk Management, Cindy van Pelt, was on vacation starting the day before the fire and did not return until July 18th,
  • The electrical equipment was known to easily overheat and they had large industrial fans blowing on it to keep it from overheating, and
  • When Abele directed the Child Support Enforcement workers back to the courthouse, it was before their work area was clean.  The area was sooty, smoky and filled with dead roaches.  Workers were sent home for another day off with pay.
But now the hapless Abele has managed to make a bad situation for himself even worse.

It is being reported that Abele is launching a PR move called "Courthouse Proud." The idea was supposedly to recognize the public and private sector workers who toiled day and night to try to get the courthouse operational again.

But Abele has a few problems surrounding what should be a no-brainer thing.

First of all, the design he asked for could be an copyright infringement:
The "Courthouse Proud" logo features four blue upraised fists and forearms as pillars on the courthouse against a red background.

The much publicized and widely reprinted blue fist on "Stand with Wisconsin" posters during the 2011 battle over collective bargaining at the Capitol has just one clenched fist, blue against a red background.

David Eisner, contract administrator for District Council 48 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, said the banner and shirts won't sit well with many employees.

Abele is "trying to distract or distort the real issue and make it into kind of a pep rally thing," Eisner said. The courthouse's aging electrical infrastructure should have been maintained better so the fire didn't happen, he said.

"It's a buncha crap, that's what I say," said Eisner.

No cause of the fire has been established yet, according to county officials.

As for the blue fist image: "It is a little different, but it's a blue fist," Eisner said. "Is (Abele) starting a union of his own?" He questioned whether the use of the blue fist for the banner and shirts might infringe on the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations' "Stand with Wisconsin" imagery.
That alone stinks to high heaven. But is always the case when it comes to all things Abele, there's more. There's always more (emphasis mine):
The courthouse fist image was put together by staff at Laughlin Constable in response to a request from Don Tyler, the county's director of administrative services. Both Steve Laughlin and Tyler have served on the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Board.

The design work was done at no charge, said Evan Zeppos, a managing partner at the Laughlin firm.


The T-shirts were parceled out to those most heavily involved in cleanup efforts, Conway said. A tally of who got the 266 shirts distributed so far included staff from eight county departments, as well as workers from We Energies and two private contractors.

Conway said there were still some left over, but those are "somewhat spoken for," he said.

"You've got to earn it," he said.
In this little blurb, Abele has made a complete mockery of the county's Code of Ethics (Chapter 9).

The Standards of Conduct (Chapter 9.05) make it explicitly clear that no county official or employee can take or give anything of value or solicit for anything of value.

Yet we have Abele sending his Director of Administration to ask for a logo design which he gets free of charge.  Abele then turns around and starts doling out these t-shirts to those who "earn it."

Just about everything about his PR stunt has the potential to be illegal and actionable.

The fire might be out, but it doesn't look like anything is about to cool off anytime soon.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Free Speech Crackdown - Day 3

By Jeff Simpson

Once again, Mike Huebsch and Scott Walker continue to show the state and the world what petty cowards they are.  They continue their crackdown on random singers.

Let's not forget, the first day they arrested an 80 year old lady, the second day they stomped all over the American flag while arresting a Vietnam Veteran, and now they have done it again by grabbing a mom/son combo:

Yes that takes true Courage.

Of course, nothing says "Open For Business" like arresting grandma and grandson and Vietnam Vets!  I bet companies just can not get here fast enough!

Once we get the 7 year and 80 year olds off the street, the business will be free to thrive!!!


David Cross and Amber Tambyln show us the ridiculousness that is the Republican War on Women!

What Is Paul Ryan Doing?

By Jeff Simpson

We wrote the other day about how no one knows where Paul Ryan (R- Wall St.) is, because he is only scheduled to work 9 days in the next two months(give him a break, he only makes $174,000/yr what do you expect from him?)!  

However, we can NOW answer the question - What will he be doing on his extended vacation?   

Why Spying on you of course! 

The House of Representative tried to defund the NSA's spying on Americans programs but the bill was narrowly defeated thanks in large part to republican leadership and Wisconsin's very own Paul Ryan! 

The bill, sponsored by Michigan Republican Representative Justin Amash, would have defunded the NSA’s bulk collection of records on millions of Americans and limited the collection to the records of people under investigation for international terrorism or foreign intelligence.

 Amash tweeted, “We came close (205-217). If just 7 Reps had switched their votes, we would have succeeded. Thank YOU for making a difference. We fight on.”
YES!  You read that right. Fiscal conservative, tea party hero,  small government loving Ayn Rand disciple Paul Ryan has decided to  keep spending massive amounts of taxpayer money to secretly and illegally, spy on American citizens.  

Scott Walker's Wisconsin

By Jeff Simpson

"No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America." Section 8
"The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing." Section 8j

This video shows Scott Walker's Wisconsin, and the contempt that the republican party have towards the people,  more than any other to date.....

A Vietnam Veteran, being arrested for standing QUIETLY in the middle of the People's house, who while being arrested, accidentally dropped his flag and the police officer who is arresting him for using his first amendment rights, stomps all over the American Flag.  

This is what Scott Walker has brought to WI!

 Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.[1]

Is there anything besides money that the current Wisconsin republicans respect?